Post-Divorce Mortgages

Post-Divorce Mortgages: Know the Facts
No one is ever fully prepared for divorce. It’s a difficult situation that becomes even sadder when children are involved. Unfortunately it’s a common occurrence and the couple must make financial arrangements that can be agreed upon by both parties.

When it comes to divorce, however, many people are unaware of the requirements involved with securing a mortgage using income from both alimony child support payments.

According to Fannie Mae guidelines, there are certain documents you must present if you plan to use alimony or child support payments to qualify for your mortgage. Here is the documentation you will need.

1. A copy of the divorce decree that indicates payment of alimony or child support, including the amount of the award and period of time over which it will be received. If the divorce is not yet final, a separation agreement may be used. However, the separation agreement must include the amount of money awarded to the spouse for alimony and/or child support.

2. Documentation that verifies any applicable state law that mandates alimony, child support, or separate maintenance payments, which must specify the conditions under which the payments must be made.

3. All documentation is to be reviewed for limitations, meaning that, for example, child support will end when a child turns a pre-determined age.

4. The following documentation is required to verify receipt of full payment: deposit slips, court records, copies of signed and filed income tax forms, bank statements and a review of payment history to determine if the income is stable and qualifying for the loan. (To that last item, the borrower must have received a minimum of six months of payments to qualify.)

Sound complicated? It doesn’t have to be. If you know someone who is divorced or is considering options after marriage, please have them call me at 617-965-1236. I will tactfully and carefully answer their questions so they can successfully begin the next phase of their lives.

May’s Home Value Improver

Planting Perfect Tomatoes

Have you ever planted tomatoes and instead of big, bright red and juicy, you wind up with a yield that is small, green and never ripens? If so, you’re doing it wrong! Here are some tips for growing delicious tomatoes that would impress both amateur and professional tomato growers.

1. Purchase plants rather than growing from seeds. It’s not cheating; there’s still plenty of work ahead. Buying the plants allows you to avoid figuring out a date to determine when 6 weeks before the final frost is, which you’ll need to know if you’re starting with a pack of seeds.

2. Acclimate your plants. Weather fluctuations can upset the plants and talking to them won’t help. Keep them outside during the day and inside at night until the nighttime temperature is consistently above 50º. We’re just about at that point now, with occasional lows still in the mid-40s.

3. Location, location, location. Here’s a tip: tomatoes need lots of sun, so be sure to plant them in a place that will get optimal sunlight. Also, they’ll need to be spaced about 3-4 feet apart so they have plenty of room to grow.

4. Test your soil. This is the best-kept secret among successful tomato-growers. The soil should have a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. You can have your soil tested professionally and get help with supplementation to get your soil just right for your tomatoes.

5. Provide support for your plants. Use ties and support cages or trellises to help your plants grow tall and strong. Also, buy or create collars to place at the base of the plants to fend off any pesky worms.

6. Water consistently. Don’t let your soil dry out before you water it. Keeping your plants moist is particularly important as the days get hotter.